Last week’s post seemed to really get people thinking about chores for their children. I received questions regarding age appropriate chores and how to implement them in a way to set children up for success. This week I’ve compiled a list of chores your child can complete independently and successfully, which should in turn make your life a liiiiiiiiitle bit easier. Who doesn’t love that?!
The following list is for 18 month olds-6 year olds. Yes, you read that correctly. The difference is in how you set up the chores. For example, the 6 year old can get on a stool, access the cereal box and a bowl, and put it all together. The 18 month old will need the cereal on a low shelf in a container he/she can access with the bowls and spoons right next to it. See? Same chore, same independence but with a little bit of a different set up. Make this list work for you, and if you have any questions, then ask me!
- Put dirty clothes in hamper. Older children can bring hamper down to the laundry room.
- Place clothes into washing machine (front loading washer/dryers) and switch them to the dryer.
- Put away folded clothes. Younger children can do simple folding such as wash cloths. Older children can assist with shirts, pants, etc.
- Unload dishwasher. Younger children can sort silverware. Older children can help with more if not all of the task.
- Set and clear the table.
- Put away toys.
- Carry in grocery bags. Lighter ones for younger children. They LOVE to help with this.
- Make bed. Younger children can assist with pulling up blanket or placing pillows on the bed.
- Unpack backpack. Place water bottle, lunchbox, etc on the counter and hang up backpack.
- Select and pack snack for school. Older children can make lunch.
- Wash dishes. Younger ones will need a lot of supervision but with a secure stool or stepladder, this could quickly become a favorite.
- Tear lettuce for a salad at dinner.
- Wash fruit before putting away (apples, pears, grapes, etc).
- Spread butter/jelly/peanut butter onto toast.
- Slice bananas for cereal.
- Feed the dog or cat. Older children can open bag and scoop out food. Younger children will need an easier access container and larger scoop.
- Put toys away after bath.
- Hang up towels.
- Return books to basket or shelf after story time.
- Vacuum! Younger children can use a hand held dust buster type. Older children can use actual vacuum.
- Wipe up spills. Have absorbent clothes easily accessible.
- Dust. Use a dust mitt for better results.
- Clean windows. Younger children can use a spray bottle and a squeegee. Older children can assist with a non-toxic window cleaner.
- Lay out clothes and dress themselves. Assist as little as possible with the younger child. Instead show him/her how to do it and let them try.
- Take trash out or trashcans to the curb. Younger children could help pull or push a small trash can full of light recycling type items. Older children can help take trash cans to the curb.
Why are we doing this? To make our lives a little bit easier–yes, but we are also doing this to give our children a sense of belonging in the home and in the family. We are telling them we value them; we are telling them they are capable little people; we are telling them we believe in what they can do. By expecting their help, we are building them up. This goes way beyond household chores, and it instead reaches a part of their spirit that whispers “Yes, you CAN!” Happy cleaning!
Find the joy~